Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke is set to speak at the Republican National Convention this week, but the vocally anti-Black Lives Matter law enforcement officer is already making headlines with his message.
In the wake of a shooting in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, over the weekend that left three police officers dead and three more wounded, CNN's Don Lemon brought Clarke on the air Sunday night for a conversation about how to keep police officers safe. However, the exchange soon turned heated as Clarke moved the discussion towards a debate on the intentions and nature of the Black Lives Matter movement.
"I've been watching this for two years. I've predicted this," Clarke said. "This anti-police rhetoric sweeping the country has turned out some hateful things inside of people that are now playing themselves out on the American police officer."
Clarke blamed the message and protests of Black Lives Matter supporters, many of whom have been protesting the death of Alton Sterling at the hands of two Baton Rouge police officers a week ago, for stoking racial tensions. He claimed there was no data to back up their claims that African-Americans' experience with law enforcement is any different than those of white Americans.
"This anti-cop sentiment from this hateful ideology called Black Lives Matter has fueled this rage against the American police officer," Clarke said.
Clarke is the sheriff of Milwaukee County, Wisconsin. He has nearly 30 years of experience with the Milwaukee Police Department. The sheriff has a history of criticizing Black Lives Matter. He has previously referred to the movement as a "subversive movement" that seeks to overthrow the government and "black slime" that needs to be "eradicated from the American society and the American culture."
Clarke is scheduled to speak Monday at the Republican National Convention Monday in Cleveland, Ohio — presumptive GOP nominee Donald Trump is a vocal fan. Protestors of many ideologies, including supporters of the Black Lives Matter movement, are expected at the event. The theme Monday at the RNC is "Make America Safe Again."